Archive for the ‘Dear Diary’ Category

*herm* …

Posted by ON in Dear Diary

I woke up at five am this morning feeling awful. Partially because i’m on day three of a painful stress-induced neck lockup, but also a sore throat and my sinuses full of junk. I’m feeling nervous because people have been throwing around the word pneumonia a lot lately.

I’d been invited last night to an all-night study/writing session by Elina, but i had the gut feeling that … well, my guts weren’t in very good shape.

Course, the thing is i have this shiny new job and accompanying shiny new health-care, so i should have a reasonable course of action. But i’ve been so caught up in work / relationship / writing / life stress that … i’ve been completely lame and not taken care of it (also said health-care provider has made it extremely difficult to secure a doctor.)

Also also, i’m supposed to get on a plane for Istanbul in six days (and later a plane for Paris) and i’m finding myself having a terribly human argument in my head between “not going to miss this trip” and “don’t really want to die.”

The truly ridiculous thing is that my real stress is that i feel puffy and ugly and i’m getting my picture taken today for work marketing materials.

Yes, my major stress in the face of pain and possibly life-threatening illness is, “Do i still look hot?”

Aesthetics and beauty and houses i seriously can’t afford.

Posted by ON in Dear Diary

I’m getting a little ridiculous about aesthetics; possibly because i’m doing so much design lately.

This is primarily manifesting in my personal life as a strong desire to create my own beautiful space. I’ve been trolling diy, craft and living-space design blogs, thinking about what would make a room look beautiful to me.

Decor8Apartment TherapyDesign SpongeRecyclartDudecraft

And, y’know, now that i’m making consistent income i’m also jonesing for a beautiful house. Someplace i love and care for. A place i could leverage into a space for writers and friends and, i dunno, just a place that’s beautiful and inspiring and can serve many purposes.

I keep looking at these outrageously expensive Victorian homes in Portland … cause i’m crazy … and possibly stupid. I think maybe i got infected with the awesomeness of Neil‘s house. I keep thinking, “yeah, i could do that.”

The main house i’m crazy about is:

I keep racking my brain for ways to finance this ludicrous plan. I’m having fantasies about writer’s retreats and workshops and and and … If i don’t get over this obsession soon, there could possibly be a call for crowd-sourcing.


Ruminations on the year: 2010

Where do i even start? I feel like i’m still processing. But, yeah, it was a significant year, full of stress and disappointments and crazy and joy. I’m happy and sad and excited and generally just really full.

There were tons of moments and details i would have done differently, but in general i feel blessed and lucky and amazed at everything i accomplished and experienced.

Heh, i just realized i could almost write the same thing for just the last two months. My life is weird.

Anyway, i’m overwhelmed at the prospect/process of distilling the last year into a single blog post, so i think i’ll steal the End of Year Survey meme (and ignore the questions that don’t resonate.)

Things i did in 2010 i’d never done before: Phew, got divorced, spent significant time in other countries, traveled for over half a year.

People close to me who died: Karen died while i was traveling. She was awesome and a fighter right to the end.

Countries i visited: Australia, Azerbaijan, England, Iceland, Kazakhstan, Scotland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates

Stuff i want to have in 2011 that i lacked in 2010: I want to write WAY more. I’m giving myself some slack for all the life changes and the traveling, but i’m not letting life stop my writing anymore and i’m not making choices this year that kill writing.

2010 was a weird year for friendships. I want to (well, sometimes i think i don’t really have any choice, i have to) continue to love people as strongly as i always do … but i want to stop getting derailed when people aren’t there for me. I’m forming more boundaries. I’ve developed a low threshold for people who can’t honor other people’s feelings or balance other people’s needs with their own.

Fortunately other people step up. My life is warm and full. 🙂

A date from 2010 etched in my memory: God, so. many. memories. (and i suck at dates) Wandering around London and Istanbul, standing in a cloud of butterflies in Aktu, Kazakhstan.

Biggest achievement of the year: Hmmm … just keeping it together and not going broke. Really focusing on what i want in my life. Finishing a graphic novel.

Biggest failure: Not having a real plan. letting myself get so ungrounded that it’s taken months just to start thinking about the future.

Illness or injuries: Heh, i stabbed myself in the hand on my last day in Kazakhstan.

People whose behavior merited celebration: Gethin and Heather and Giles and Nell, Nina.

Where did most of my money go: Travel, period.

Stuff i got really, really, really excited about: Museums! Other cultures. The Black Sea. Istanbul. Seeing Damien. Seeing Gethin and Heather. Seeing Mary and Durand.

Compared to this time last year, am i happier or sadder? Hmmm … I’m happier. Things still challenge, but i’m doing what i want and am excited about possibilities and options. 🙂

If i had 2010 to do over again, knowing what i know now, what would i do differently? I would have planned more. I would have built my life around writing.

Best book i read: I did shockingly little reading this last year. But The City & The City was really good and i loved Glen David Gold’s Carter Beats the Devil.

Greatest musical discovery: Listening to lot’s of great new stuff, but i’m going to go with Frightened RabbitThe Midnight Organ Fight

What did i want and get in 2010? I wanted to get the hell out of dodge, to see the world and to figure out what was next. … Check, check and check.

Best films of 2010: A lot of not-so-challenging films this year. (and, come-on, i think my life was challenging enough. 😛 ) I adored Inception. Star Trek was brain candy, but thoroughly enjoyable. I cried in Toy Story 3. And … OMG *squee* Scott Pilgrim vs. The World!

What i did on my birthday: Whew. I landed in Edinburgh and wondered what the hell i was doing. On my birthday, Gethin and Heather took me out and … it was just chill and connective and wonderful. And got a mandolin. Lovely.

One thing would have made my year immeasurably more satisfying: A novel contract.

My personal fashion concept in 2010: For most of the year i wore the same four tee-shirts and a pair of ever-disintegrating jeans. But once i got home it’s been vests and button-downs. I might possibly look like a hipster raiding his grandpa’s closet.

Who did i miss? Jai, Nina, Loreen, Damon, Damien, Mary & Durand … lot’s of others.

Who was the best new person i met? Elina

Valuable life lesson learned in 2010: Hmmm … balance, balance, balance. I want to travel, i want to write, i want to feel grounded, i want adventure, i want close friends, i want new experiences. Balance, balance, balance.

$#!% to do …

Posted by ON in Dear Diary

Last night i wrote and read a story at the Wordos holiday reading, which went pretty well.

I mean, i think it did.

People seemed to like it at least. In general the process reminded me of how i used to write. Think of an idea in the morning, poke at it a few times in the afternoon, throw everything away and write something else all at once.

This system works pretty well for flash, but has been trickier for longer stuff. I kinda wonder about writing scenes this way, if i could lay out the larger story, maybe i could knock out chunks in inspired flashes.

Hmmm …

Anyway, thinking about what and who is important to me these days.

A lot of money work, mostly. I love my job, and i work with really cool people, but i’m still getting used to the time commitment. Sometimes i’ve been able to write in the mornings, or take short breaks in the afternoon, but mostly i’ve been writing at night again. That works, but i’ve been hanging out with folks a lot and i keep feeling the draw between being social and getting my words for the day done. I think trying to balance my writing life with social time is also making me feel pretty picky about who i hang out with. My tolerance for BS and games is pretty thin at the moment.

Anyway, the thing i’m most excited about is my new motivational system / game i’ve invented out. It’s kind of ridiculous, but i’ll post it here in a few days and see what people think of it. It has charts, goals … and poker chips …

Anyway, you’ll see.

But, yeah, that seems to be most of my life these days: Work, writing, exercise, friends.

I still have long term goals i’m thinking about: Portland, MFA, writing stuff, but i think as long as i’m writing, sending stuff out and hanging out with worthwhile people, i feel pretty satisfied with my life … short term.